Analysis of the Black Church: Black Theology and Racial Empowerment

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Since the arrival of African Americans in this country blacks have always had differing experiences. Consequently, African-Americans have had to forge a self-identity out of what has been passed on to them as fact about their true selves. History has wrought oppression and subjugation to this particular race of people and as a result, certain institutions were formed in order aid African-Americans, culturally, spiritually and economically. The African-American Church has served of one such institution. From the time of slavery, though outlawed, many slaves found ways to congregate and form their own "churches", away from the one-sided and bias lessons about the bible that they were being taught in the white church. The white ministers and…show more content…
He then goes further and states that there can be no white churches and even the establishment of one is blasphemous due to the idea that these institutions center on the oppression of another human race. In a great percentage of history books the information given is only given from one perspective. One when is reading or listening to an historical account, one must take into consideration who the historian in order to gain more insight into why they may have a particular account about a particular event. The same is true when looking at churches. Because white experiences in this country differ so greatly from those of African-Americans, The Black Church has the burden of being a spiritual backbone of a community while also being able to relate to the specific experiences of African-Americans. Calhoun argues that if blacks are able to get away from the image of God given to them by whites and form their own, they would be more likely to relate to this image and as result would become more empowered and connected to their race. The idea of racial empowerment and black theology can be considered as counterparts. If one is given a religion that is based on experiences that are not their own, and cannot relate those experiences to themselves, they are more likely to be apathetic towards them. Religion has long served as a means of moral and emotional support. Calhoun argues Blacks

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